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American Revolutions and Counterrevolutions
ENGL 151
Spring 2015 not offered

This first-year seminar examines the pendulum swings of struggle in three realms whose conflicted history defines the American Enlightenment: democracy, racial equality, and early feminism. We will study the Great Awakening in New England, the American Revolution and the conflict over the U.S. Constitution, the impact of the French and Haitian revolutions in America, and the transatlantic influence of Mary Wollstonecraft. Our focus will be on a narrow historical period, less than three quarters of a century, but we will gesture toward generalizations about the nature of Enlightenment thought as such: how its claims on behalf of universal humanity could (and can) be used as a tool to effect real social equality, and how we are to understand the relationship between political speech and social conflict. Our texts are not specifically literary, but we will pay attention to literary and rhetorical effects. Our interest lies not only in the political claims of these texts, but also in how our writers make their claims. We will close the course by opening a discussion on the current state of claims for universal human rights.
Credit: 1 Gen Ed Area Dept: HA ENGL
Course Format: SeminarGrading Mode: Graded
Level: UGRD Prerequisites: None
Fulfills a Major Requirement for: None

Last Updated on JUL-20-2024
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